The Appeal of Conscience Foundation
Founded by Rabbi Arthur Schneier in 1965, the Appeal of Conscience Foundation is an interfaith partnership of corporate and spiritual leaders from all faiths who come together to promote “peace, tolerance and ethnic conflict resolution.”
The Appeal’s philosophy is that freedom, democracy and human rights are basic principles, and if they are granted, nations of the world have their best hope for “peace, security and shared prosperity.”
"A crime committed in the name of religion is the greatest crime against religion,” is the organization’s mantra. Following the act of September 11th, the ACF has rallied religious leaders worldwide to take a stand against terrorism and to use their influence to halt violence and promote tolerance.
The true motivation of the Appeal has been called into question following the honoring of Indonesian president Yudhoyono despite controversy within Indonesia and the ongoing genocide Yudhoyono's government is overseeing in West Papua.
Delegations from the group meet and have met with religious and government leaders throughout the world promoting peace and democracy. Some of its work has been in conducted in Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Bulgaria, People's Republic of China, the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Cuba, Czech Republic, El Salvador, Germany, the Vatican City, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Morocco, Panama, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovak Republic, Switzerland, Spain, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom and the former Yugoslavia.
The Foundation frequently hosts diplomatic and clerical groups from abroad to acquaint them with the religious life in America society.
World Statesman of the Year
In 2003 José María Alfredo Aznar López. In 2009 the Foundation awarded the title of 'World Statesman of the Year' to the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, for his intellectual and compassionate leadership during the global financial crisis. Previous awardees include: the French president Nicolas Sarkozy and German chancellor Angela Merkel.
The 2012 recipient was Canada's Prime Minister, Stephen Harper.
Sep 27, 2012 Address by The Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, recipient of the 2012 World Statesman Award
Sep 20, 2011 Address by H.E. President Lee Myung-bak H.E. President Lee Myung-bak of The Republic of Korea, recipient of the 2009 World Statesman Award.
May 12, 2011 Address by H.E. Francois Delattre of France On behalf of President Nicolas Sarkozy of France, Ambassador Francois Delattre presents Rabbi Arthur Schneier with the Legion of Honor in recognition of his tireless efforts to promote and support religious freedom, human rights and interfaith tolerance all over the world
Sep 22, 2009 Address by Ivan Lewis on behalf of PM Gordon Brown The Right Honorable Gordon Brown MP, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom is recipient of the 2009 World Statesman Award
Sep 22, 2009 Address by Muhtar Kent Muhtar Kent, Chairman & CEO, The Coca-Cola Company is recipient of the 2009 Appeal of Conscience Award
Sep 22, 2009 Address by Bernard J. Arnault Bernard J. Arnault, Chairman & CEO, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton is recipient of the 2009 Appeal of Conscience Award
Sep 23, 2008 Address by Jeffrey R. Immelt, President & CEO, GE Jeffrey Immelt is recipient of the 2008 Appeal of Conscience Award
Sep 23, 2008 Address by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg Mayor Bloomberg delivers eloquent speech as he accepts the 2008 Appeal of Conscience Foundation Public Service Award
Sep 23, 2008 Remarks by Deputy Secretary John D. Negroponte Deputy Secretary highlights honorees at the 2008 ACF Annual Awards Dinner
Sep 23, 2008 Address by His Excellency Nicolas Sarkozy President of the French Republic is recipient of the 2008 Appeal of Conscience World Statesman Award
Sep 23, 2008 Address by Dr. Henry A. Kissinger Dr. Henry Kissinger gives poignant address on behalf of His Excellency Nicolas Sarkozy, President of the French Republic, at the ACF 2008 Annual Awards Dinner
Sep 21, 2005 Foreign Minister Alexander Downer Acceptance of the World Statesman Award on behalf of the Prime Minister of Australia, The Hon John Howard MP, at the 40th anniversary dinner of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation
Sep 21, 2005 Jorma Ollila, Chairman and CEO, Nokia Acceptance of the Appeal of Conscience Award Jorma Ollila, Chairman and CEO, Nokia Appeal of Conscience Foundation 40th Annual Awards Dinner New York September 21, 2005
Sep 21, 2005 Peter G. Peterson, Chairman, Blackstone Group Honorable Peter G. Peterson, Chairman, Council on Foreign Relations, at the Appeal of Conscience Foundation 40th Anniversary Dinner September 21, 2005
Sep 20, 2004 Sir John Bond, HSBC Chairman, 2004 Dinner SIR JOHN BOND GROUP CHAIRMAN, HSBC HOLDINGS PLC APPEAL OF CONSCIENCE FOUNDATION DINNER
Oct 14, 2003 Address by His Excellency José Mará Aznar President of the Government of Spain Recipient of the 2003 Appeal of Conscience World Statesman Award
Oct 14, 2003 Address by Dr. Josef Ackermann Chairman Group Executive Committee and Spokesman of the Board of Managing Directors, Deutsche Bank Recipient of the 2003 Appeal of Conscience Award
Oct 01, 2002 Address by Rabbi Arthur Schneier Appeal of Conscience Annual Awards Dinner Honoring The Right Honorable Jean Chrétien and Carleton S. Fiorina
Oct 01, 2002 Address by Carly Fiorina Chairman and CEO of Hewlett-Packard Company - Receipt of the Appeal of Conscience Award Appeal of Conscience Foundation Annual Awards Dinner
Oct 01, 2002 Address by Prime Minister Jean Chrétien 2002 Appeal of Conscience Annual Award Dinner
The 2013 'World Statesman of the Year' was highly controversial since Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has failed to protect religious minorities in the world's largest Muslim-majority country, and overseen what has been determined to be a genocide in West Papua  Instead of promoting tolerance, President Yudhoyono has overseen a sharp increase in acts of intolerance to Ahmadiyah Muslims, Shi'ite Muslims, and Christians, leading to widespread public criticism from human rights activists, academics, and persecuted minority groups.
Petitions to Rabbi Schneier to withdraw the award garnered over 10,000 signatures from around the globe. Instead of heeding the concerns of persecuted minorities, Rabbi Schneier granted the award and helped President Yudhoyono to, "whitewash his legacy." Human rights activists eventually concluded that the Appeal of Conscious Foundation was little more than a vehicle for publicity-seeking and influence-peddling.
Listing of The Appeal of Conscience Actions
- November 9, 2005 - Declaration of the Peace and Tolerance II Conference: Dialogue and Understanding in Southeast Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia
- July 28, 2005 - Call for Action on Darfur
- December 1, 2000 - A Call to Stop Desecration of Holy Sites by a delegation to the United Nations
- March 18, 1999 - Kosovo Peace and Tolerance Vienna Declaration (With former U.S. Congress member Joe DioGuardi of the Albanian American Civic League)
- May 21, 1998 - Joint Declaration of the Delegation of Religious Leaders from Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Appeal of Conscience Foundation
- March 30, 1995 - The Vienna Declaration Signed at the Appeal of Conscience Conflict Resolution Conference
- February 9, 1994 - Bosphorus Declaration was signed at the Appeal of Conscience Conference on Peace and Tolerance
- November 26, 1992 – The Bern Declaration for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Episcopal Life Online, Interfaith leaders focus on importance of religious freedom, October 12, 2007
- Serbian Orthodox Church delegation visits Appeal of Conscience Foundation and National Council of Churches, March 23, 2006
- "US foundation names Gordon Brown world statesman of the year". London: the guardian. March 3, 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-31. Unknown parameter
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- http://www.hrw.org/news/2013/02/28/indonesia-religious-minorities-targets-rising-violence http://www.hrw.org/news/2013/02/01/indonesia-confront-intolerance-2013
- https://www.change.org/petitions/no-world-statesman-2013-for-susilo-bambang-yudhoyono http://www.change.org/SBYNoStatesman
- New York Times, U.N. Assembly Votes to Condemn Attacks on Religious Sites June 1, 2001
- U.S. Clerics Seek to Safeguard Religious Sites, by BARBARA CROSSETTE, December 26, 2000